FISHER — The Fisher Village Board voted to contribute $2,000 toward the membership of the Fisher Area Business Association in the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce.  

The total annual membership is $5,000. The Fisher National Bank has agreed to contribute $500.  FABA officials will solicit contributions from other community businesses to fund the remaining balance.

 FABA plans to join the chamber on a one-year basis to take advantage of the programs offered to the membership. The chamber will provide exposure for Fisher businesses and events through its website and social media, and would send organization officials to the village to meet with local stakeholders on a rotating basis, one half day a month.

The chamber will add FABA’s business directory to its website, manage its Facebook page and grow its followers, allow FABA businesses to list their job openings, create a special email through the chamber for FABA and allow businesses to participate in the chamber’s energy co-op.

The board accepted the low bid of $7,500 from Waters Electric, Rantoul, for materials and labor to install the seven new light fixtures along the lakefront path in Heritage Estates subdivision that had been previously purchased by the village. This work will involve trenching in conduit and wiring to the seven sites, installing the new fixtures on concrete bases and backfilling the trenches.

The board also agreed to spend $2,000, and Chandler Concrete and Excavation will complete the concrete bases on which the new fixtures will be mounted. Chandler has proposed to donate the equipment and labor for the project, with the village responsible for the cost of material.

The board altered the immobilization requirement for mobile/manufactured homes contained in the code of ordinances. As currently written, all such homes are required to be placed upon a permanent foundation extending below the established frost depth. It will be amended to eliminate the foundation requirement in favor of a concrete slab of dimensions that mirror the area of the home to be sited. A building permit must be obtained prior to the installation of a mobile/manufactured home. These homes  are allowed only within the trailer park which is in bankruptcy proceedings.

Village Administrator Jeremy Reale reported he recommends no increase in the total general fund operating budget from the current fiscal year to next. This covers the operating costs for the administrative, public works and police departments. The zero increase has largely been accomplished through reductions in personnel-related expenses, including changing group health insurance plans, which resulted in an actual decrease of premium costs during FY20.

Additionally, the part-time janitorial position within the administrative department was eliminated last September and the part-time mowing position in Public Works is being eliminated this year. The duties previously handled by these part-time positions are being assumed by the three full-time employees within those departments.

Reale said the capital improvement fund budget proposal includes a total allocation of $298,000 for next fiscal year, a reduction from the $645,000 capital appropriation in the current budget. Next year’s capital program will be funded by approximately $85,000 carried forward in unexpended funds from this year’s  budget, with the balance funded by interest earned on the village’s roughly $7,000,000 investment portfolio.  

Staff has designed the capital program to focus on three main areas—public works equipment replacement, $113,000; park site improvements, $100,000; and sidewalk improvements, $55,000.00

The balance of the budget, $30,000, is earmarked for professional services related to capital projects such as engineering.